Thursday, October 24, 2013

DIY Frosted Pumpkins





This is the easiest thing to do EVER! Have I got the interest of those of you who always say
"I cant make ANYthing!"??
It is SO easy in fact, I am going to let my 3 year old grandson help me sparkle up another batch of these tiny ghosty punkins this weekend!

WHAT YOU'LL NEED

paint brush ( 1 inch or wider)
Modge Podge
Epsom salts
Pumpkins (any size, any color)


Its a good idea to wash them off first, and dry with a towel.
  

Pour your salts in a dish big enough to roll them around a bit, and sprinkle over tops.
Simply brush the modge podge on to surface. (don't forget the stem)
Then roll around in salts, sprinkling over the top if necessary.
  
 
Place them on a newspaper to dry. (about an hour)
And there you have it my friends!


These ( and many other gourds) would be beautiful on your Thanksgiving day table, would they not?
I'm telling you, you are going to think you are Martha Stewart!


After Thanksgiving dinner is enjoyed and the greasy kitchen all cleaned up... throw all the pumpkins in the tub and have a well deserved Epsom salt soak!
But watch where you sit.
Now go get your glitter-self ON girl!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

October Love



 

                                    October passes much too quickly don't you think?

Although the nights have grown cold, the mornings dark, and the fleece sheets pulled up under my chin tempt me to stay cocooned against the morning chill... just a little longer.

But the path, in the first morning light is always calling to me.
(that… and the large head of a Black lab propped next to my face, soft brown eyes watching my every breath until my feet hit the floor.)

Reaching the trail, I am never disappointed.




This particular morning as the sun comes up, the leaves that have been painted with a touch of frost overnight begin to fall all around me with a soft clicking noise. (as if there is not enough beauty for my eyes to behold, my ears get to join in the party too!




Ducks float silently through the mist rising from the pond. The foxes are no where to be seen, perhaps they are still curled up in there den under the covered bridge, more than likely… they are hidden in the tall grass watching me!

Chandler and I turn back as the sun is completely up now, the morning show for today is over.




I'm so grateful, that God made everything in living color! He could have just made everything black and white. Color is a gift, in every season, every day… but October? Who can not love it?!

Back home, we enjoy our morning coffee, and look out the window at all those beautiful leaves… that have fallen… and now need to be cleaned up. We could hope for a wind storm or...




We could invite the grand kids over for cheap labor.




Take time this day to enjoy the many paintings of October, right outside your window because November is coming with its bare tree browns, and it whites of frost and snow...
Which I believe, has beauty all its own!

Don't you just love the changing of the seasons?


Saturday, October 19, 2013

Chandelier in the Willow Tree

    (continued from "Where the Willow Tree Grows.")
 
 



This beautiful willow tree graces the little farm on Emma Lane.
 As I was sharing with you in part one of this story, it began 30 some years ago when Ric and Bernie stuck two tiny little willow twigs in a bucket of water. The roots filled the bucket, then were placed side by side in the ground, they grew together entwining into one magnificent giant!
At the end of this late summers day, the sun sinks behind the hills painting the sky pink and gold.The long graceful branches dance in the cooling evening breeze, inviting us to come.....

Hearts are glad as we friends bustle about in the kitchens gathering up all the special culinary delights lovingly prepared earlier in the day by Bernie. 
 Fancy trays of strawberries with dip, tiny crackers with Bernie's Mint Jelly, seasonal offerings from the garden, Ric's smoked cheeses...
and SOMEtimes… Bernie makes a fancy tray of tiny bologna sandwiches, on white bread cut in little triangles, crust off… my FAVORITE!
Mind you… I don't eat white bread and my bologna eating days disappeared with my childhood
 but I'm telling you...
 under this tree they seem to be food of the gods!

Last but certainly not least..




The champagne arrives wrapped in ice and shining silver!



We all settle under the tree to enjoy its shelter from the sun and the outside world.
Pleasant conversation among friends blends with the evening calling of the turtle doves and the beginning of the crickets chorus.

The Wrens flit in and out of their gourd birdhouses overhead reminding us...
It is time to add the ethereal glow of
 the Chandelier !



I found there was only ONE way to share the magical glow of a Chandelier in a Willow tree, (and I really wanted to… because after all… how many of you have ever sat under a chandelier in a tree??)



So onto the ground I went.
As I enjoyed the hard work of this particular photo shoot, I realized there was a missing bobeche on our beloved chandelier!
"BOBECHE...!!!"
Who says that??
This word makes me laugh out loud every time I say it, or even think of it!! I had to look it up on google to even know how to spell it! It is a French word and is the glass collar that sits beneath the bulb and holds the glass prisms on a chandelier.
Who knew.
I noticed that there was one missing, and it was really bugging me..messing up my flat-on-my-back shots!




Now that YOU see it… it bugs you too, right?
My friend Denise and I agree, we must replace it! We decide to get one for Bernie's Birthday and have it up for our next tree gathering in a few days. Where in the world do you shop for a Bobeche?? (I just put that line in because I wanted to say it one more time .)



 By now, Ric has started a fire in his fire pit with bundles of willow twigs he gathers, ties up with twine and keeps stacked by the barn. (On occasion, he will grill thick steaks over the flame for our dinner!)
The harmonica is brought out, Rick Service Stories are recited,  Old stories are brought back to life, new stories are shared.
 Our laughter rings out over the cooling pastures as time is suspended under the tree, the outside world turning midnight blue.



Under this beloved tree, many have been refreshed and encouraged.
And the laughter, OH my goodness the laughter!!

Tears have been shed, friendships mended,and prayers have filtered up through the knowing branches,who have heard it all, yet hold it all secret. Which must be why Bernie calls it her Secret Garden.

Yes.

 Our time under the Beloved Willow tree is always perfect.

Except for that ONE night.

(to be continued..."Evening of destruction")



Friday, October 11, 2013

Where the Willow Tree Grows



Where do you go when your heart longs for home but there is no home in which to return?

I was fortunate enough to have grown up in the country. We were poor, our family never owned a home, living in 7 different places. I have fond memories of every one of them; fields and creeks, barns and tree houses, cats, dogs, horses, cows, chickens and ducks. How I wish I could return to my favorite spot in the hayloft , or show my grand kids the rickety raft tied at the edge of the pond, or  the tree house my brother built in the big tree above the creek....
My parents divorced years ago, dad has since passed away and my dear mother is in a nursing home.

Before you stop reading this sad tale, please come with me to my adapted home, that feeds my country-heart longings.

Come with me to Emma Lane, where my friends Ric and Bernie have lived and loved each other for 38 years!   When my country loving roots need nourished, I am blessed to be welcomed here!  I am greeted with warm hugs and the heavenly smells of Bernie's Pot Roast, which is THE best I have ever had! ( Sorry Mom)

The front porch swing creaks in the breeze that is scented with honeysuckle. Almost every seat inside the house and along the back porch are rocking chairs! 24 of them! Ric says the only thing that doesn't rock in this place is the music!




HOME SWEET HOME!

Where late summer flowers ramble freely over fences,


Gooseberries hang heavy, just daring you to taste....


and 28 birdhouses nestled here and there make for some happy birds who all sing their chorus of thanks in the early morning!
 I wander through the garden picking the last of the raspberries, I marvel at the size of the rhubarb plant, and wonder if tonight's dinner will include Bernie's amazing rhubarb pie! There are pumpkins unable to hide their orange as they grow fatter under the tangle of leaves



Out in the pasture under the bridge, Farmer Ric has planted Squash and Zucchini where they ramble with abandon!

I look back from the pasture at this little home I love, and smile at the thought of my bedroom , with windows flung wide open, where tonight when I crawl under the Chenille bedspread, the cold night  air smelling of fresh cut hay, will float over me like a dream from my childhood, complete with dogs barking in the distance, and the "chht chht chht" of sprinklers....The covey of turtle doves  alongside the house whisper soothing coos throughout the night...
I am brought back from my daydream as I gaze upon the giant willow tree, which is after all the center of this special place, not to mention the star of my story!
  
 
Thirty years ago...Ric and Bernie stuck two willow branches in a bucket of water. The roots soon sprouted, the twigs were stuck in the earth....It has withstood storms of wind, ice and snow.

When the sun goes down..... the chandelier hanging low in its branches begins to glow , the crickets begin their song,
and  that my friends...
is when the magic happens.....

to be continued.

 





 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
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